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Hospital documentary series a real eye opener for viewers, says programme consultant

A nurse has spoken about what motivated her to help put together a new six-part documentary series.
Alice Markey works at St Marys Hospital

A nurse who was a programme consultant on a major new series about one of the UK's busiest hospital trusts says viewers 'will have their eyes opened' to what working life in the NHS is really like.

The second episode of six-part documentary Hospital airs on BBC2 tonight at 9pm.

Filmed in the last three months of 2016 at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust in London, cameras follow staff across the trusts five hospitals, where 10,000 staff care for 20,000 patients a week, making the trust one of the largest and busiest in the country.

The series was produced in partnership with the Open University.

'Beneath the skin'

Open University head of nursing, Julie Messenger, who acted as a consultant

A nurse who was a programme consultant on a major new series about one of the UK's busiest hospital trusts says viewers 'will have their eyes opened' to what working life in the NHS is really like.

 BBC /Ryan McNamara
Alice Markey works at St Mary's Hospital, which is the location
for Hospital's second episode airing tonight
 Picture: BBC/Ryan McNamara

The second episode of six-part documentary Hospital airs on BBC2 tonight at 9pm.

Filmed in the last three months of 2016 at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust in London, cameras follow staff across the trust’s five hospitals, where 10,000 staff care for 20,000 patients a week, making the trust one of the largest and busiest in the country.

The series was produced in partnership with the Open University.

'Beneath the skin'

Open University head of nursing, Julie Messenger, who acted as a consultant to the filmmakers Label1, told Nursing Standard: 'Hospital gets right beneath the skin of how all the complex decisions made by everyone from trust directors to nurses and doctors, impact on the work of every single member of staff.

‘Though it is set in busy London, but I think the stories and situations presented exactly reflect the same ones people in other areas will recognise.

‘There’s shortage of resources, homelessness, communication problems with patients, lack of beds, even car parking charges.'

Different location

Tonight’s episode focuses on St Mary's Hospital in Paddington. With nearly all of the hospital's 297 beds occupied, the hospital must discharge patients before any new ones can be admitted – and new patients are arriving all the time.

Ms Messenger added: ‘The level of access the filmmakers managed to negotiate is truly unprecedented.

'Viewers are really going to have their eyes opened.'


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